Day #315 – Intentionality

No, I wasn’t angry at the nurse.

A reader emailed me and commended me on my ‘calm’ reaction to the nurse yesterday (Read Day #314).

That was very kind and I am honored to receive such a compliment.

Here’s the deal though…

For me, it is and always has been about intentionality.

I say stupid things.  I know I’ve hurt people.  I hope those people forgive me.  I can guarantee that my intention was and is NEVER to hurt someone else.  I can say that ‘never’ with 100% certainty.

Believe in the best.
Take the high road.
Don’t go to the mud.
Two wrongs never make a right.
You catch more flies with honey than vinegar.

These are all phrases said MULTIPLE TIMES while I was a child.  This is the reason why…

For me, it is and always has been about intentionality.

That nurse?  She did not mean to say it like she did.  She did not mean anything by it.  I am positive 100 times a day she says, “Any problems but diabetes?”  “Any problems but arthritis?” “Any problems but psoriasis?”

What she said was out of pure habit.  She did not INTEND to hurt or demean Tucker.  That I’m sure of.

How am I sure?

I guess I can’t be – but I just believe it to be so.

This is why I advocate.

Maybe it’s my own naiveté, but I truly believe that the wide majority of people do not want to hurt each other.  Sure – there is always a bad seed in the bunch, Tucker’s Sidekick the Fat Theatre Chick certainly showed us that.  It was certainly hurtful.  Honestly, it hurt quite a bit – but then I spent some time thinking.  Thinking about what made that person so hurt, so angry, so vengeful – and I thought about how lucky I was (am).  I don’t have that kind of hurt, anger, and vengeance in my heart.  I’m thankful for that.

I advocate because I truly believe that with education people will learn, people will understand, people will develop compassion.

Let’s be honest- the unknown is scary.  Whether it’s not knowing if you have a job or entering a dark room – it’s always a bit scary.  The fear is often to protect us and propel us into some sort of action such as looking for a new job or having our senses on high alert to strike our.  Having knowledge helps us remain calm and thoughtful.

I didn’t react because a strong reaction rarely (if ever) helps.  Anger breeds anger.  Hate breeds hate.  Anger and hate met with understanding and compassion?  Anger and hate met with educating and advocating?  That is when real, meaningful change can begin to occur.

That personal change is quite intentional. That personal change is intentionally positive. That change sparks an understanding.  That change sparks change for one person…and then another, and another, and another.

Until one day the majority of us learn.
Until one day the majority of us understand.
Until one day the majority of us develop compassion.

Let us open both of our eyes and begin to learn from and with one another.

Let it begin with you.

The next time someone says something hurtful, check for intentionality. Then advocate, explain, teach – open another’s eyes.

Let it begin with you.

2 thoughts on “Day #315 – Intentionality

  1. Pingback: Day #327 – Indexing | 366 Days of Autism

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